Garmin announced on Wednesday that 10 percent of the Cessna Citation Excel and XLS business jet fleet has now been retrofitted with the company’s G5000 integrated flight deck upgrade. As previously reported by AVweb, the G5000 Citation Excel/XLS retrofit program was introduced in 2016 and received STC approval two years ago. According to Garmin, the G5000 upgrade provides a way to modernize the Excel/XLS cockpit and solve “long-term concerns related to legacy avionics parts obsolescence.”
“Offering an unprecedented level of situational awareness, the G5000 also yields a significantly lower cost of operation and delivers an exceptional in-flight experience making it an attractive upgrade in these popular aircraft,” said Carl Wolf, Garmin vice president of aviation sales and marketing. “We look forward to growing the success of this program further so even more owners and operators can continue to experience the benefits of the G5000 integrated flight deck in the cockpit.”
The G5000 setup for the Excel and XLS features three landscape-oriented flight displays with split-screen capability. Installation includes a fully digital automatic flight control system (AFCS), emergency descent mode (EDM) and optional underspeed protection (USP). It also offers fully integrated ADS-B Out, PBN/RNP 0.3 with LPV/APV approach capability and FAA Data Comm with options for synthetic vision technology, SurfaceWatch and datalink weather.
> According to Garmin, the G5000 upgrade provides a way to modernize the Excel/XLS cockpit and solve “long-term concerns related to legacy avionics parts obsolescence.”
I was going to post a snarky comment about Garmin needing to provide avionics parts, but according to W the original avionics were Collins/Honeywell.
But it raises a good point. If airframe and powerplant mfgs. can provide parts forever until they’re BK, why can’t avionics vendors? The Excel started sales in 1998, XLS 2004 and XLS+ 2008 – why are avionics parts a concern this soon? Is it CPU and LCD versions from semiconductor OEMs?
The reason is because airframes are made out of aluminum or other basic materials. Electronics are made from integrated circuits that become unavailable after about ten years. When a product (like the GNS series) is in production for more than ten years, the manufacturer ends up superseding the components on the circuit boards bit by bit. But once production stops, the “keeping up” also ends.
A start of good point but garbled in ‘superseding’.
Sometimes manufacturers try to make a ‘lifetime buy’ – enough parts to cover anticipated production quantity of the design. And educated guess I think, given the variables.
I have been told that no one manufactures CRT’s any more. Notice no one sells televisions with picture tubes now. A lot of jets made since the 1990’s have CRT’s for cockpit displays. New replacements are no longer available so these kind of avionics upgrades have become more and more common. A lot of standby instruments in these same jets are also no longer made. One company I worked for had to find an equivalent replacement for one that failed in a citation ultra at a cost of over $30k.